Department of Education (DOE) –
Many legislators were concerned with the possibility of additional budget cuts for schools beyond the $350 million in cuts that were instituted in CY 2010. Superintendent Bennett reassured the legislature that Governor Daniels has said that CY 2011 support will be consistent with the funding support that was provided in CY 2010. Translation: The new K-12 funding “base” proposed by DOE will incorporate the 2010 cuts as a permanent base reduction, leaving funding at 4.9% less than the CY2011 appropriation passed in last budget.
The DOE’s FY2011-2013 Biennium budget request of $6,524,802,987 remains consistent with the base rate* recommended by the State Budget Agency; however, the request did include some significant transfers of money between certain line items.
For example, Superintendent Bennett requested that the line item for “professional development” be eliminated and absorbed to other areas of the DOE’s budget. Superintendent Bennett defended this change by explaining that the DOE does not have a metric that allows them to determine whether the professional development funds are being used efficiently and effectively; therefore, he requested that the DOE maintain control of these Title II fund until better monitoring tools could be developed.
Superintendent Bennett also proposed to reduce the Non-English Speaking Program appropriations by $650,000. When questioned about why this area’s need was estimated to be shrinking instead of growing, Superintendent Bennett explained that if the money was moved to the DOE’s operating budget “they could provide more resources in that area.”